The learned author has missed many aspects of Nepalese culture.
The so called Virupakshya is described by him as a nobel man. If the author
had studied more carefully he would not have missed the third eye indicating
that the figure is one of the manifestations of Shiva and not a nobel man.
Nepal is a tourist's paradise with an infinite variety of
interesting things to see and do. Nepal has many things to offer the visitor
the flourishing of art and architecture a demonstrated by the temples of
Kathmandu Valley, the natural beauties of the soaring peaks of Himalayas
including Mountain Everest and others.
Nepal is a small
country, but within a short distance one will find different
environment patterns, religions, languages, races, festivals.
Nepal is the garden of different ethnic groups. People live
with various interesting cultures. They are 60 ethnics1
groups,11 major languages and 70 dialects2
. One of the ethnic group is the Gurung. Gurung population is
spread in Kaski, Gorkha, Lamjung and Shyangja districts, Annapurna
area and around the whole of the Gandaki zone. They are also
found to have inhabited in different places throughout the Kingdom.
Their origin is from the Mongoloid race. They are famous as
a warrior and are addressed as the brave Gorkhas. Ghandruk,
the subject matter of this article is a huge, compact village,
two days walk from Pokhara. In Ghandruk , the majority of people
are from Gurung community. They are famous for their unique
culture. They are now very much well aware and conscious of
eco-tourism. Annapurna area is located in west central Nepal
and internationally well known for its formidable peaks. It
preserves and contains some of the highest mountains on earth
and the world's deepest gorge, namely, the Kali Gandaki gorge
which is laid between the Dhaulagiri and Annapurna Himalaya
ranges. Ghandruk is situated in the southern slope of Annapurna
Himalaya amid the western region of Nepal. This is also the
entry point to both the Annapurna and Machhapuchre Himalayas
. The mountain tourism in Nepal started in 1950. The first ascent
over a 8000m peak was accomplished by Mourice Herzog on Mt.
Annapurna . Since then ,Ghandruk has been a focal point and
most popular area for trekking.
Ghandruk Village Development Committee (VDC) lies
betwen 280 12' 57" N - 280 15' north latitude and 830 59'
42" - 840 2' east longitude at a distance of a one day
walk from Birethati. The altitude of the Ghandruk varies from
1,000 masl at Birethanti to 2,050 masl. The western slope of
the Annapurna range on which the village is situated faces east
and extends toward the bank of the Modi River. The VDC area
stretches north to the Annapurna range and to Dansing and Sikha
VDCs in the west, while Modi Dovan and Sondhi Khola lies in
the sourth. The mountain tops from Ghandruk towards Ghorepani
and from Ghorepani to Ulleri are covered with dense forests3
. Ghandruk village consists of seven small villages such as
Kotgaun, Majhgaun, Dhyagoyargaun, Adbadaiyayargaun, Tallogaun,
Dandagaun and Gairigaun
There are many legends about Gurung. We don't
have written local language document. "The legend of the
Rai and Limbus describes the origin of the mountain population
of Nepal. A man coming from Tibet Manainua had ten sons; one
of them, Gurupa, was the ancestor of the Gurungs4
1. Dr. Ramesh Raj Kunwar, Ethnicity in South Asia, pg. no.
2. Ibid, pg. no. 67.
3. Kamal Baskota and Bikash Sharma, Tourism for Mountain Community
Development Case Study Report on the
Annapurna and Gorkha Region of Nepal, pg. no. 67.
4. Bernard Pignede, The Gurung, pg. no. 14.
"The another legends derive the word "Gurung"
the word Guru (Teacher) because the first Gurung was celebrated
for his great wisdom and knowledge. Rai's and Limbu's legend
were describe their origins from the mountain population of
Nepal. A man came from Tibet named Manainue, who had two sons.
One of them Gurupa, was the ancestor of the Gurung. The another
Nepali legends link the origin of the Gurung to the assault
of the Rajputs whose descendants founded the dynasty of the
Thakurs reigning to this day in Nepal. One prince who belongs
to dynasty of the Surjes was meditating in the Himalayas, accompanied
by his wife, and by the family of his priest and that of his
servant. They intermarried with the indigenous people. From
these unions came the founders of the different Gurung clans.
The another legend says that these Ghale came from the northern
slope of the Himalayas and installed themselves on the southern
slopes at Siklis, Ghandruk, Lamjung and Gorkha; they governed
the country until the arrival of Princes from India. The marriage
with the Ghale and the original inhabitants resulted in the
clans of contemporary Gurung society "5.
According to W. Brook Northey and C.J. Morris using certain
facts noted by Hamilton, Hodgson and Landon, attempted to
reconstitute the conquest of west Nepal, and in particular
the Gurung area, by the Rajputs abscond from Chitor after
the capture of that town by the Mogul Emperor. The younger
son of Marmath, installed at Ujjain, reached Nepal. He seems
to have settled at Ridi (near the Palpa) among the Magars;
then he went towards Bhirkot to the east of Ridi. There he
had tow sons, Kancha and Minca. Then elder began his conquest
of Magar territory, Minca established his rule at Nuwakot,
Lamjung, and Tanhu, regions mainly inhabited by the Gurungs.
One of his descendants, Jagdeva, who reigned towards the end
of the 15th century at Nuwakot, had seven sons. The eldest
succeeded him. The second, Kalu Sah, became king of Lamjung
but soon assassinated. The inhabitants of the country, not
having a king, asked Kulmandan, who governed Nuwakot and Kaski,
to give them another of his sons to become their king. The
youngest, Yasobrhma, was chosen and ruled in the country of
Lamjung. He had two sons. The elder acceded the throne while
the younger left for the conquest of Gorkha which he occupied
in 1559. The descendants of the latter left in the 18th century
for the conquest of Kathmandu and Gorkha king was successful
in his aim and new page opened in the history of modern Nepal6
Sir R. L. Turner writes "it seems that the mongoloid
populations (of which the Gurungs are part) came to Nepal
comparatively recently, sattled on the southern slopes of
the Himalayas, and then mixed with an older indigenous population".
According to Jag Mohan Gurung in his M. A. dissertation "The
Gurung tribe is a product of the three mixed tribes, Minkunji,
Ghale and Nochan".
Most of the Gurungs in Ghandruk believe that their ancestor
might have came from Siklis, Gorkha and Lamjung district.
But some of them don't accept this version. They believes
that they are origin from Ghankruk where their ancestors were
born. However, they are very happy to stay on the lap of the
Among the ethnic groups in Ghandruk, the Gurung
group is dominant accounting for 64, Magar, 4, occupational
28 and others 4 percent of the ethnic composition of households.
Among the Gurung community in Ghandruk, the age group from less
than 10 years 16.5, 10 - 65 years 80.5 and 65 and above 3.0
percent. Literacy and level of education of the household member
aged 10 years above 36.9 percent are illiterate. Similarly,
13.5 percent can read and write, 12.6 percent having primary
education, 23.4 having secondary education and SLC or above
are 13.5 percent (Table - 1). The Gurung population involved
in different economic activities are agriculture 48.7, service
3.6, pension 4.5, business 1, tourism 11.7, wage labour 1, student
17.1 and others 12.6 percent, respectively7
(Table - 2).
Table- 1: Literacy and Level of Education of the Household
Members of Ghandruk Aged 10
Years and Above
Can read and write
SLC or above
Sources: Tourism for Mountain Community Development
Case Study Report on the Annapurna and Gorkha Region of Nepal
Table- 2: Distribution of Economically Active Population
of Ghandruk (10 years and above) by
Sources: Tourism for Mountain
Community Development Case Study Report on the Annapurna
and Gorkha Region of Nepal (ICIMOD).
These Gurungs of Ghandruk are also divided
into two main groups, known a "char jat" and "sorah
jat." The "char jat" is considered to be higher
and superior in their social status than " sorah jat".
The cross - cousin marriage is very popular in Ghandruk but
parallel - cousin marriage is not allowed.
7. Kamal Baskota and Bikash Sharma, Tourism for Mountain
Community Development Case Study Report on the
Annapurna and Gorkha Region of Nepal, pg. no. 108/109.
In architecture people always use locally available
materials. The people of Ghandruk make their house with stone
, rock, mud, wood, cow - dung etc. These houses were made with
slate and tin roofs and have two stories of which the upper
storey is used for storage. The courtyards are found in the
front side of house and were found very clean. There are water
taps and sheds situated beside the house. Most of the houses
have main door and the windows of the upper storey faced east
and the height of the main door will be sort. Lighting rods,
which looks like Trishul (Trident) are also found on most houses
to protect them from the thunder. Every house has a parapet.
They use the parapet for various activities such as rest, meeting
people and gossiping. They also use it to carry their own a
cottage Industry work and also use for dinning. In the ancient
time why did Gurung people make their main door of most of the
houses very low ? According to Min Bahadur Gurung there is a
story behind this. The Gurung in those days believed in shamanism.
If the house entrance height is low then it would be difficult
for any one to enter the house without bending or bowing the
head and there by evils would not be capable of bending their
head and thus not enter the house from the gate while chasing
people. Thus population of the low height main entrance-door
existed due to the influence of this story. But these days the
architecture has changed. But still one will find small main
door houses in Sikles village which has still been preserved
The Gurungs of Ghandruk have a patrilineal
society. They have both nuclear and joint families. But now
a days people are staying in the nuclear family . A nuclear
family synthesis of married couple and their unmarried children.
In the joint family, people stay with their grandfather ,
grandmother, father, mother and their married son and their
children. The son inherits all of their father appurtenances
movable and immovable. When they become gaffer all the son
equally inherit their parents appurtenances .
Particular care is take during the pregnancy
time. Before three months the husband stop having sexual intercourse
with his wife. The women say that if you can feel the head
of the foetus on the right, the child will be a boy, if it
is in different side or on left it will be a girl. At the
birth, the baby's body is washed and anointed with butter
(ghee) or mustard oil. It is good to put a drop of this oil
into each eye in order to give the child "keen sight".
The umbilical cord is cut with a sickle or a Khukuri9
. The Gurungs do not allow the married daughter to give birth
to a child in her natal home. This rescues her father from
bad portent. This time her family does not worship god. On
the third day of child birth there would be a ceremony of
purification and the mother and child, after sprinkling with
Gahout (cow's urine) they will be purified. When the male
child grows to 2 - 5 years old, a tonsure ceremony is held.
The relatives will offer benediction and gifts to the boy
according to their capacity. The ceremony is celebrated having
the boy's hair cut by his maternal uncle. If he doesn't have
own maternal uncle (mama) then closest mama in relation would
be chosen by astrologer and priest. After tonsuring a cap
by putting on the boy's head by his family like wise for the
girls when she reach the age of 5 - 13 years they would be
"Gunio cholo" (a kind of clothes similar to blouse
and scoots) . This function will be chosen on a particular
day to in an odd year10 .
8. Diwas Dhakal, Ghandruk at a Glance, Nepal Travellers,
pg. no. 66/67.
9. Bernard Pignede, The Gurung, pg. no. 215.
10. Diwas Dhakal, Ghandruk at a Glance, Nepal Travellers, pg.
Every households are monogamous, one man only marrying one
women at a time. A man is very honestly attached to his wife
and does want to share his affection between two women. For
her part, the woman will not accept cohabitation with another
woman if she has some children. If the husband wants to take
another wife, the first will leave the household and divorce
him. The Gurung of Ghandruk have their marriage system based
on "clan exogamy and caste endogamy". This means one
must marry outside of his clan and inside the caste (jat) .
In the societies synthesis of two major groups (char jat or
four clans) and minor group (sora jat or sixteen clans) .Ghale,
Ghotane, Lama and Lamichane (char jat) and higher to the sora
jat. In Ghandruk there is a system of patrilateral cross - cousin
marriage but there is no system of polyandry and polygamy marriage
but in sora jat Gurung marriage is preferred to continue the
old marital relationship. The people of Ghandruk have arranged
marriages. Parents have to be satisfied with their choice. If
they are satisfied with their choice, they organise the engagement
"Theki pisa". No one is allowed to get married with
the lower crummy Jat but people now a days marry inter caste.
Love marriage is also introduced in this area due to the cross
cultural relation. Brother in law and son in law play essential
role at the time of marriage and funeral ceremonies.
The funeral ceremony is performed in two ways during the initial
mortuary rite and disposal of the body, which is called "misihari."
The concluding memorial ceremony which is called "Arghun"
or " pai " . The Lama (the priest) play the vital
role to decide it. They decide with the help of their astrology
whether the dead body is to be buried or cremated. The lama
decides it by the position of planets. The death of a person,
the bereft family restrain from salt and meat for 13 days. The
son will give a fire to his dead father mouth and will shave
the head hair, the beard mustard and eye brow. They are not
allowed to touch dog and chicken. If there is any earlier death
or mourning in 'Jajaman 's (employer of the priest) house then
the Jhakri (wizard) performs the ceremony sitting at a nearest
distance in the hut outside the home and pass the information
to others with the help of drums. If there is the mourning in
wizard's house then firstly he will perform his rites by worshipping
"Si Failu" (God of Death) inside his home then only
he will be permitted to perform other assignments by biting
the drums in his court-yard only. Prior to the death procession
the eldest daughter must loose her hair and the sect mark with
charcoal placed on the forehead and Bhujatro (a kind of cloth)
twisting in waist crossed-wise at an angle and perform the 'Kra
Sa" (cleaning job) with the help of buttering the flower
which are already kept on the dead body. In the death procession
of the dead-person daughter has to walk by throwing the Lawa
(puffed rice) following behind the Lama and then only sons will
carry the dead body. Rest of the women have to follow the men's
death procession. This rite is still there with some of the
The people celebrate Dashain, Maghesankranti, Tihar, Teej.
Shreepanchami, Chaite Dashain, festival with full of joy. Some
of them also celebrate Lhosar (new year). Besides these festivals,
they also observe the popular Krishna charitro dance (about
the story of Krishna merriment ) , Sorathi dance (about king
merriment 'Lila') Ghanto dance (only unmarried girls can take
part), Rhodi (the night club of boys and girls). But now these
dances are gradually been vanishing.
Spiritual Leader (Jhakri)
The Gurung of Ghandruk is, by nature animistic and practitioner
of shamanism (Dhami Jhakri). The spiritual leader of the village
conducts the task of worship systematically and carefully.
If he does not do the process properly, it is believed that
the deity becomes angry and brings misfortune to the whole
villagers creating various calamities like, landslide, snowfall,
drought, starvation and the like. The spiritual leader for
this reason should be very careful, alert and industrious
during the process of worshipping of the Meshroom Barah.
When the spiritual leader manages every essential thing properly,
then only he starts murmuring sacred mantras to satisfy the
Barah. Taking considerable long period in his process of worshipping
comes the process of sacrifice of sheep ad male goats. The
spiritual leader himself sacrifices them with a long sword.
After sacrificing, the goats and sheep, the fresh blood of
each goats and sheep is sprinkled on the stone, which is worshipped
as the Meshroom Barah. Rest of the blood is kept into the
big vessel. After completing this process the Jhakri takes
out seven piece of meat from each of the sacrificed goat.
The piece includes blood, liver, heart, lung and kidneys.
These pieces, in turn, are pierce through a bamboo stick to
offer to Meshroom Barah. Then after the inner meat is cooked
in a big vessel and eaten with great enthusiasm and merriment,
like that in picnics. The breads are distributed among the
whole mass of people. The little amount of which it carried
for their rest family members who have to come to the "Than".
The women are not allowed to enter into that particular spot
because they are supposed to be filthy, unclean and "Maila"
(filthy in Gurung language). As soon as the spiritual leader
finishes the worship he carries some bread and head of all
sacrificed goats and sheep. After the process of worship is
observed and goats and sheep are sacrificed, every people
return to their respective houses with the body of sacrificed
goat and sheep. The meat of sacrificed goat and sheep is taken
as prasad of that deity. The prasad is distributed among neighbour
and their relatives. After all these performance are done
the people take their meal. This is the example of perfect
social relationship and understanding among them, which is
unique custom in Gurung of Ghandruk. The worship of Meshroom
Barah is also conducted by the village in a community level
with the help of village development committee. The whole
expense is done by the VDC. On this occasion, only one sheep
or male goat is sacrificed by the spiritual leader (Jankri)
which is known as the share of whole villagers. It is also
a good example of harmony and good interrelationship among
the Gurung in Ghandurk. They also follow and believe in Mahayan
school of Buddhism. Beside that they also worship Hindu gods
They worship Meshroom Baraha. The Meshroom Baraha is known
as the guardian deity of the village. People believe that
long time ago there was an unknown man who was famous in the
village for his kind hearted personality. When he was dead
his soul could not get reclamation because of his mistake
which he had done in his life. It started roving around the
village and began to tease the people and cattle. One day
a wizard visioned secret of the fact and the people decided
to set up a "Than" (temple) to place the ghost of
that holy man on condition to offer the commodities of his
wish. After the completion of the ceremony there is peace
in the region. From that day people of Ghandruk started to
worship of Meshroom Baraha and the people onwards continued
this tradition since then. The materials of worship comprises
a hurler full of water, rice flour, roce graom, copper lamp,
flower especially pati (brownish non -florescence flower ),
cow-dung, cow ghee, red vermilion, cow milk, money and colourful
flags made of cloth. All these things are essential, if not
the process of worship is not complete. Beside that they also
worship the local deities like Ban Devi, Bai Katraykhola etc.
The Barah is worshipped in a sacred day that is on any Tuesday
of Chaitra or Baishakha. It is a commonplace phenomenon to
offer the deity at least one sheep or male goats accompanying
with ten breads made from rice flour form each household.
Every houses are smeared with the mixture of red clay and
cow dung and the person participating in the worship of deity
has to wear new and sacred dress on this occasion. One this
day, ploughing of land is not done by general consciousness
and religious anthomity also prohibits ploughing of land on
this day and people do not start there long journey on this
day. When the whole villagers gather in the premise of Meshroom
Barah deity, the spiritual leader of the village begins chanting
mantras and begins offering homage, which is believed to bring
goodness and opulence to the whole village of Ghandruk.
The people of Ghandruk have great faith on Meshroom Barah.
It is believed that Meshroom Barah controls every activity
of Gurungs of Ghandruk; and saves the villagers from various
types of catastrophes. It is even believed that Meshroom Barah
creates a suitable environment for agricultural activities
as well as the shifting of the 'Gotha" of the farmers
from one place to another, it is believed that Meshroom Barah
saves the people who have been abroad to acquire money and
/ or other activities, to gain social status as well as economic
prosperity. People recruited in army have great faith on Meshroom
Barah because they believe that Meshroom Barah saves their
life during the time of war and conflicts. It is the cause
of faith, which Gurungs have on Meshroom Baraha. The ex-army
personnel Kajiman Gurung says that once when he was in the
battlefields his troops were captured by Pakistani armies
he suddenly remembered Meshroom Barah, for his life promising
to donate a big bell should he be rescued from the fence of
Pakistani soldier. Without wonder, he was able to overcome
the fence of enemy immediately. When I asked about this
occurrence he stressed that it is Meshroom Barah who freed
him from the fence of Pakistani troops. From then on his faith
to Meshroom Barah has further increased. Every year faithful
former inhabitants of this village reported, come from either
Pokhara or Kathmandu to pay homage to Meshroom Barah bringing
with them the various types of gift. So it would thus be no
wonder to say that Meshroom Barah is the guardian deity of Gurungs
There is also a common belief that if Meshroom Barah gets
angry it will bring calamities in the peaceful living of people
by creating many catastrophes like, landslide, drought, snowfall,
floods, grain scarcity, etc. It is the reason why they don't
like to annoy Meshroom Baraha and for the fear of which they
take strict percussion during the worship.
Though Meshroom Barah is a famous deity of Gurungs of Ghandruk
and though they have great faith on their pattern deity, modernisation
has brought great change among the thinking of youngsters
and these people, in turn, have dared to question the truthfulness
and the real existence and authority of Meshroom Barah in
recent days. The great faith which their father and forefather
had on Meshroom Baraha has at present been questioned and
it has been a subject of disgust of new generation, and on
the country the subject of research to the researchers.
Dress and Ornaments
The people wear bhoto which is a white shirt with four knots
tied in it. The white peace of soft - cloth known as kachhad
fallen up to the knee is wrapped around the hip. Besides that
they use a hand made gray strong crosses in front with two knots
on the shoulder. It is used for carrying food and other light
things. Its comfortable and they get benefit of both working
and eating at the same time. It's called Bhangra or khandi.
They also tie a khukuri in their waist. The culture is changing
slowly with the influence of modernisation and the traditional
dress and culture is gradually disappearing due to this change.
The women of this community are very fond of dress and ornaments.
Mostly they were necklaces, bead in the neck, nose-ring "Tuki",
earrings, finger-rings, etc. While they are getting married
they have to put on "Sribandi" in the head. But now
a days culture is demolish. People preferred luxurious modern
dresses and ornaments. The modernisation is, however, changing
their unique culture.
The Different Economic Activities
The occupations of people are agriculture, animal husbandry,
soldiery, cottage industry and tourism. According to the ICIMOD
(1995) 48.7% of the population depend on agriculture. There
are two types of land pakho (up land) and khet (low land).Annapurna
Conservation Area Project (ACAP) approach for the people of
this area is to encourage and strengthen traditional agricultural
practices and at the same time, introduce new and appropriate
technologies. Organic farming with the use of organic fertilisers
and pesticides is the encouraged practices. Now in Ghandruk
and in nearest village we will find in vegetable production
, varieties of radish, spinach, butter bean, cauliflower,
chilly, onion, garlic, broccoli, pea, okra, cucumber, bean,
carrot etc. In agronomic crops maize, millet, paddy, soybean,
ginger and potato. Cash crops are cardamom, coffee, pineapple,
garlic and horticulture apple, papaya, walnut, mandarin, orange
hybrid lime and local lime. In Ghandruk the main food of the
people are maize, millet and rice. Rice is not grown there
in large quantity. People prefer "Dhindo" (gnuel)
and potato which is their main staple food. They use the meat
of buffalo, goat, sheep and chicken. The alcohol spirit "raksi"
and home made bear "chhyang" are used as welcome
drink for their guest. During each and every festivals people
use raksi and chhyang .Besides that they drink milk, curd
after taking off the butter. Now a days tea has been very
popular in Ghandruk.
In animal husbandry people tend sheep, Goat ,cow , buffalo,
mule, ox , chicken. The main mode of transportation is by
donkey/mule. The charge of mule is Rs. 60 per kilometres.
During summer the cattle are shifted to the hill top (lek)
in winter they are transferred up to Ghandruk. But now a days
animal husbandry is not desired due un-economical return.
But the people are following this husbandry as had been followed-on
from the very beginning. However, it is noted that the price
per buffalo is about Rs.12,000 to Rs. 15,000, the cow is about
Rs. 10,000 - Rs. 12,000 and mule is in between Rs. 20,000
to Rs. 25,00011 . Average livestock
holding by type of animals by the household is given in Table
Table - 3: Average Livestock Holding Type of Animals (LSU)
Sources: Tourism for Mountain
Community Development Case Study Report on the Annapurna
and Gorkha Region of Nepal (ICIMOD).
Gurung are among the best warriors. Ghandruk is
a home-land of brave Gorkhas. So, since the beginning, people
are also being attracted towards the army life (soldiery) to
earn extra income. Most of the Gurung are in the British and
Indian army. They have also established a small scale cottage
industry . This cottage industry is gradually picking-up and
growing up in Ghandruk. They weave carpet, blanket etc. and
sell to the visitors.
Now a days tourism industry is growing in Ghandruk
and it is the main income source of the inhabitants. It is
from here one can see the best mountain views of Annapurna
and Machhapuchre. The young local guys are attracted in this
field and are getting employment as guides and potters. Both
the male and female do pottering job. In 1998, 65,587 ( a
total of 58.2% trekkers of Nepal) visitors visited Annapurna
area. There are two types of trekkers. (1) Risk takers world
view (his hesitation is lost.) (2)Risk Avoiders (look before
you leave) .Ghandruk is very popular for Risk Avoiders. This
area was popular since 1950 when Maurice Herzog reached on
top of Mt. Annapurna. Herzog's book Annapurna (Jonathan Cape,
London, 1952) remains a classic of mountaineering literature.
It's indicative of how things have changed in Nepal that Herzog
had trouble even finding his way to the mountain ! Today thousands
of trekkers pass by the Annapurna every year and, where Herzog
once had to search desperately for supply for his hungry climbers,
there are now comfortable lodges offering bed and breakfast
to trekkers. Most hotels and lodges are built in traditional
ways. But nowadays some buildings and lodges are equipped
with modern facilities. Previously the village architecture
were in symmetrical order but now there has been architecture
Ghandruk is a model village of eco- tourism in the world.
Ghandruk has received international awards for eco - tourism
. Here the eco tourism means that involves travelling relatively
undisturbed or uncontaminated nature areas with specific object
of studying, admiring, and enjoying the scenery and its wild
plants and animals as well as any existing cultural areas
in which the conservation of eco - systems and protection
of biodiversity is aimed at, the desired types of tourists
and tourism visit the protected area and the organisation
and legislation of the tourism development support a sustainable
tourism. Now a days the popular slogan of eco -tourism defines
as environmentally and socially responsible tourism which
minimises degradation of natural environment, cultures and
socio - economic conditions and provides economic benefit
to local people through employment and services.
Role of ACAP
Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) has played
the role of a brain and bridge between the people and tourism
in this region. .There is a homogeneous society in Gurungs
of Ghandruk. So they assemble in one place to discuss how
to attract the visitors, how to keep the place neat and clean
and how to promote tourism. So every member of the village
and their family will participate in the cleaning and bettering
the place. Thereby the participants will get all the medicine,
agricultural and other items in compensated cost from the
community. ACAP has done a lot of activities. In Resource
conservation they do like forest management, soil and water
conservation , wild life management, training for local nursery
workers, forest guards and leaders, promotion of alternative
energy and fuel efficient technologies and restoration of
sites of historical, cultural and archaeological importance.
In the community development they do repair, improve and construct
the schools, bridges and take care of general health and sanitation,
health clinics, family planning, toilet, garbage pit , adult
education, agro-forestry, agriculture extension through training
and distribution of seedlings, etc. For tourism management
they have managed to a local lodge, search and rescue; e.g.
arrangement for an emergency rescue from helicopter evacuation
for visitors, hotel and lodge management training courses
for lodge operators, trekking guide training and eco -camp
site development. Besides that for conservation education
and extension programmes they do use mobile audio a visual
aids to promote their programmes, educational materials, village
clean up campaigns, natural history museum and visitor information
services, environmental resource library and many other things.
So ACAP has played a vital role to develop this area. On the
other hand the people are also conscious and thus appreciate
the one who have made their village (Ghandruk) a Paradise
of the World of tourists and nature walkers.
Bankota, Kamal/Bikash Sharma. (1995). Tourism
for Mountain Community Development Case Study Report on the
Annapurna and Gorkha Regions of Nepal (Series No.
MEI 95/11). Nepal: International Centre for Integrated Mountain